with liberty mutual new car replacement™, we'll replace the full value of your car. liberty stands with you™. liberty mutual insurance. s if you were to fall in there you'd be swept away in h no time. >> this is the second time we have to face a hurricane. we did hurricane rita, and we not ready for this again. >> i had to safe a guy's life right here. he was handing on to a telephone pole, and i got a rope. i heard him. he was out there for about 30 minutes. >> people are scared. people are in need of a lot of help. it's not just coming fast enough. >> welcome to a.m. joy. i'm in for joy reed. there is new fallout from donald trump's pardon of arizona sheriff joe arpaio and new reports on how far he went to
save a long time political ally. we begin with tropical storm harvey, the city of houston, one of the largest. 20 inches of rain have fallen in some places, an addition of 15 to 25 inches is expected across the texas coast as harvey moves slowly over the or ya. emergency services performed hundreds of rescues tonight. the city of houston is urging residents to stay off the street unless they are in imminent danger many the mayor will be holding a press conference in h just an hour. we're going to go tote you that life. first let's go to stephanie g k gosk. stephanie, it's gotten white serious in houston. >>reporter: there are probably a lot of people that went to bed thinking this wasn't as bad as we thought it was going to be.
this morning, they are waking up to their worst fears, overnight, historic amounts of rain. you shade 25 inches. the biggest event they've had for rain in recent history here in houston was back in 2001. that was a tropical storm that dumped 24 inches over a onecoup of days. you're talking about overnight. this, if you're familiar with houston, this is a major highway here. it's 45. and it has been cut off in both directions. it is blocked off because of the flooding. that meant a lot of people had to come under underpasses like this one. this water has reseeded here temporarily. but last night it rose and it rose quickly and there were multiple cars stranded. i'm actually standing next to what appears to be someone who tried to get around that flooding, and ill advisedly drove up here. a pickup truck that is stuck. this morning, you are hearing from officials in the city.
they are maxed out. they are saying publicly that there are people in need that they just can't get to. there are fires in some neighborhoods where you have fire crews unable to reach them. it is hard to overstate the critical situation that it city finds itself in this morning. alec? >> you're in a place where you found some either high ground or ground that's not flooded, but we were hearing from jacob rascon earlier that they couldn't get out of the hotel. they had gone in for a little while and, at that point there was no leaving. so while the houston authorities are saying don't leave unless you're in h an emergency. you may be in parts of houston where being in an emergency wouldn't allow you to leave anyway. t >> reporter: yeah. they are telling people not to take to the streets however there are people out here. the worst of the flooding really took place southeast of the city. we're trying to get there to show people what's going on.
we know there are house to house rescues, that there are people in boats being taken out of their homes. they called in the middle of the night and only just getting rescued this morning. the and the meteorologists are saying overnight, between the hours of 12:00 and 2:00, what is now tropical storm harvey stopped moving altogether. when it stopped, the bulls eye was houston and those bands of rain, that were coming in and out yesterday, stalled over this city, and that is why we are seeing this situation. the this critical situation for the fourth largest city in america. and you and i were talking last week before this all started about not just about the people in h this city and what they're going to endure as a result of this tragedy but also talking about the economy of the country. the city of houston, as you know, is the center of the energy industry in this country, and it is going to be shut down because of this.
>> energy, chemicals, shipping, all of that coming out of houston. we'll stay close you. let's go to msnbc meteorologi meteorologist. >> worst fears? catastrophic, worth flood of the houston's history. the longer the rain continues, more lives will be lost, fema was saying they'll be in the area for years to come: of to try to give you a perspective of how huge and how catastrophic this is going to be for the city of houston. all because of harvey sitting in this spot near victoria. this area has just overnight seen an inundags of rainfall. one to two feet in the last 12 hours in some cases. this is i-610.
main highway in h and around the city of hughouston. usually clearance of about 15 to 20 feet for the big rigs. i can't even tell you where the river is supposed to be on this map. we have numerous pictures, i-610 at west park. this is the light camera, a paurt bottle flowing within feet of it. the camera is almost under water. this is i-45. i can't tell you where the water is supposed to be. you can see the cars and vehicles with the water up to the doors. this is the downtown area. the river where it's supposed to be contained is in these walls right in here. and if you look at the red light here, you can see how high the water is to up half way up the red lights. all that water go going up and over through downtown. a lot of people stranded in between these areas. this is i-69.
you can see the underwater overpasses completely submerged. here is i-610 at 220. these are the elevated highways. i'm sure people are stranded up on top of those. this is i-69, the water is supposed to be on this one, the water--i can't even tell. >> well you know the big rigs in order to get under that it's got to be at least 13 feet. so you know that they're like you said 15 feet or more. in houston elevated highways then down to ground level. if you were on an elevate the portion, you could be ended up on a flooded portion of road. >> these are some. rainfall totals. easily in the one 0 to two foot range. this is what we call a civil emergency for the flash flooding in the area for 5 million people, which is almost unheard of and goes from the bow mon--
area. then the big rivers have record breaking floods in the days ahead. and here's the worst part. we said this is a five-day event. today's day three. two more days of rain. our computer models, one still says in the next couple days another 25 inches of rain in the houston area. newer 15 in victoria. it is saying san antonio not too bad or corpus christi not too bad. this is one of our other computer models still saying another 7 or 13. you get the picture. some of the worst things that's ever happened in the city of houston happening right now. just when they send out the message this morning which told mel don't call 911 if the water is only in the bottom floor of your house. think about that. the telling people don't go in the attics because we learned from katrina. go to the roof top.
>> thanks very much for this. joining me by phone is st. john barnard smith, houston chronicle, law enforcement reporter. what's it looking like to you? is this much greater than people expected? >> reporter: certainly very surprising. pretty incredible. i was just walking around in my neighborhood to get to my car and got swamped out and there are just cars everywhere that are flooded and very high water. >> what is -- you just heard what bill was saying, police are saying don't call 911 if your first floor is flooded. you heard stephanie gosk saying a lot of people went to bed last night thinking houston may have dodged the worst of it and now waking up to the worth of it. >> >> reporter: you're absolutely right. full on missile right into houston. >> what happens now? it school is back in session in texas, but obviously delayed
that. not school on monday but when you look at the type of flooding we're seeing, there may not be commercial activity or personal activity in hughes to be for efl days. >> i think it could be much more than several days. with all this extra rain that's going to come down i think the flooding is going to get worse for quite sometime. like you said, school in houston is cancelled. that's going to continue for several days and law enforcement and public safety agencies across the region are just working full-tilt. they've already made 1,000-plus rescues last night. they're just really smashed out and doing an incredible job too. >> unlike some of the more rural areas hit by the storm on friday night and into saturday, houston's got a lot of things that have to continue to happen, including a huge number of hospitals, people who are -- who require the constant care of a hospital, and aged tpopulation.
what is the most serious issue right now if this flooding continues to get higher? >> reporter: well i think there are a couple but you're absolutely right. the medical center is one of the largest centers in the country. that's certainly an issue. also, the whole oil chemical and manufacturing businesses and industries all could be at risk. it all really depends on how bad the flooding is and how long that keeps the roads shut down. and hopefully we don't have any like big chemical spills anything like that because that would be a huge add the challenge. >> people forget with all that oil comes a lot of chemicals and while the authorities in those places are good at keeping hem relatively safe from high winds, flooding prevents trem strem from getting to them. >> wr' going to have more on
harvey, but up next, a shocking trump arpaio development. stay with us. ter sergeant. they really appreciate the military family, and it really shows. we've got auto insurance, homeowners insurance. had an accident with a vehicle, i actually called usaa before we called the police. usaa was there hands-on very quick very prompt. i feel like we're being handled as people that actually have a genuine need. we're the webber family and we are usaa members for life. usaa, get your insurance quote today. i'm about to pop a cap of "mmm fresh" in that washer with unstopables in-wash scent boosters by downy. and if you want, pour a little more, because this scent
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when you first looked at it, what was your concern? if. >> fake. >> yeah, if this is a fake certificate. >> i've been very good in investigating fake government documents. i won't go any further than that. >> former arizona sheriff joe arpaio never misses an opportunity to reference his birtherism. which he's never denounced even to declare this past december that he has proved that president obama's birth certificates is a fake. it is not a fake. this is the man on whom donald trump bestowed his first
presidential pardon friday night and "the washington post" is now reporting trump had tried to intervene even before arpaio was convict tsd last month. according to the post, trump asked attorney general jeff sessions whether he could instruct federal prosecutors to drop the case. he was told that would be inappropriate. the white house has confirmed the post's report saying it was a normal discussion about legal matters. a normal discussion about legal matters. joining me now is republican strategist evan zig freed, the former chief ethics lawyer for rich -- thank you for all of you for being with us. richard, let me start with you. i've seen tweets from you about this. i guess there are questions people have. would such a conversation be legal? and would such a conversation be ethical? >> well certainly not ethical. it's not appropriate for the president to try to influence a
criminal case, a specific criminal case, particularly at that stage in the proceedings. whether it's legal or not depends entirely on what is said in the conversation. but that could amount to obstruction of justice trying to shut down a prosecution by shut down the russian investigation by firing james comey, i think the firing of james comey was a much clearer case than what happened here but it certainly raises great concerns. and then what really troubles me is that the game plan is mere. first try it, a conduct that amounts to could be struck shn or dumbs close to it. and if that doesn't work, then come through with the pardon. and that's what i fear may very well happen with respect to the russian investigation as far back as last december, newt gingrich was talking about how president trump could pardon his way out of any investigation including russia. that appears to be the game
plan. it's clearly inappropriate conduct. may or may not have been legal depending on what was said. >> so in the wake of or concurrent with sebastian gorka either resigning or having clearances revoked on friday, something that was likely to upset this whatever we call trust donald trump's base, this is an offset. whatever former sheriff joe arpaio has done and it has been a lot and many question whether it had anything to do with law enforcement at all, he is no now a 85-year-old somewhat of a has been. is this an offset for the president losing some of the key players in his base? >> i think the reason he signed the transban military ban at the same tie is what you're referring to. at the end of the day i would say the sheriff is not a has been. he's going to be now the poster
child of what happens when you are with the president even if you break the law. and that is i think what a lot of folks are concerned about. i think, this has much further reaches. it's basically also sending a signal to those that may have decided to cooperate with mueller that they don't have to because he will now give them a presidential pardon. this is highly unusual. while the constitution does allow him to do this, most presidents wait two and a half to three years before doing so. the and it's a long list of individuals. this president did it seven months into his presidency with two political ally. so another way of basically showing favoritism which has never been done so abruptly and clearly on the american stage. >> this is a problem for republicans, because this is donald trump playing to his -- the most base intents he has. the that's a double -- and that
is birtherism and racism. this is not something mainstream republicans are interested in. joe arpaio and the things that he has stood for. >> yeah. the only person celebrating in is kelley ward. she's saying this is the greatest thing. speaker ryan even came out and said this is wrong. republicans believe in law and order. part of that is if you are told buy a federal court to stop doing that and you don't and are held in contempt, then you actually have to listen to the judge and you earn those consequences. the president just said that doesn't matter. look at the bigger picture. look who he likes in law enforcement. joe arpaio, sheriff clark. both of them have had wrongful death. >> he tweeted this morning about sheriff clark. >> well sheriff clark's book is about as educational as a coloring book right now because look at what he did as sheriff. you have people dying in his custody because they denied the person water for seven days.
the and when donald trump goes out and he goes on long island and talks about roughing up suspects, that's his view. you can violate people's civil liberties, you can rough of suspects and racially profile. heck, i partially believe donald trump will take a play or page out of arpaio's play book and fake something. remember sheriff arpaio faked an assassination attempt against himself and tried to frame and ex-confor it? this sends a terrible signal and i'm glad republicans are saying it's wrong. >> interesting point you make that maybe this is a signal to bob mueller that doesn't matter who you indict or charge or do whatever you want to, i can and will pardon them. if that's true, and you're bob mueller, why do you care? in other words, he can keep doing what he's doing. if the president wishes to pardon anyone he it entitled to, that doesn't change the
underlying allegation or conviction. >> exactly right. that's not going to stop the muler investigation. the bottom line is that if he gives someone a pardon, that person then has to testify if bob mueller requires testimony. that person can no longer plead the fifth amendment and say i will not tef because it might incriminate myself. indeed, it may make it easier for bob mueller to get testimony from people. if there are some pardons. so it cuts both ways. i don't think it's going to be a very effective way to obstruct the russian investigation. at this point they're grasping at straws. the president made it clear he wants to put an end to the russian investigation. that's why he fired james comey and almost fired bob mueller. until that idea was shut down.
this russian investigation is going to be forward and we're going to find out who drab rated with the russians and we're going to throw them out of our government and may have to throw some people in jail. but there certainly a number of people in the trump white house who want to obstruct justice this this investigation, and i think that includes the president himself. it's not going to work. >> maria, what richard says will give comfort to a lot of people but where is the fire wall? former sheriff joe arpaio represents something and can do damage. just mention the sheriff clark. these guys are still around. what's the fire wall? what stops people from the sort of behavior that is extra judicial? h the stuff that neither democrats nor republicans are interest in. the president is retreating to his base and this could actually harm people on the street. >> not only harm people on the street but also harm our institutions. we seem -- of the president seems to forget that the judicial branch is on equal footing as that of the white
house. and what we need is a strong voice from the republican party right now from republican leadership saying that this is not okay. a tweet is not enough. we actually need them to follow through. you could have progress ives an other folks putting pressure on it but we need the republican leadership. racial profiling and throwing the book at the law is not okay. we actually need to be -- if you truly believe that you are part of the law and order branch of the party, then you have to come forward and say what is happening at the white house is highly unusual. it's not part of our traditional politics and part of your american values. >> i want to close out on this, because evan and richard have been republicans in their lives. this is not a partisan matter. >> it's not. >> by pardoning arpaio trump made it clear that constitutional racism is not just okay with him, it's a goal.
every american who believes our duty as a nation is to continue working on behalf of equal justice. that, last i checked is neither the domain solely of republican the or democrats. both of you will be back. always a pleasure to see you. thank you for joining us. coming up next, republicans change their mind on disaster relief. stay with us. don't let dust and allergens get between you and life's beautiful moments. switch to flonase allergy relief. flonase outperforms the #1 non-drowsy allergy pill.
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♪ well it's you girl, and you should know it. ♪ ♪ with each glance and every little movement you show it. ♪ ♪ you're gonna make it after all. ♪ it takes a long time to get to the top... ♪ you're gonna make it after all. ♪ but with america's best ♪ you're gonna make it after all. ♪ bumper-to-bumper limited ♪ you're gonna make it after all. ♪ warranty, the all-new volkswagen tiguan will be there every step ♪ ow!♪ of the way. welcome back. tropical storm harvey has caused massive damage. obviously the citizens of the state of texas will need disaster relief from the federal government. both texas senators jumped into action asking the president for major national disaster. given the national stroe ic impact we strongly sfoert this request and urge you to provide any and all emergency protective
measures available by a major disaster declaration. this is a procedure thing for elected officials to do. texas will require and fully deserves the help. but crews did not always feel that in the past. when super storm sandy victims required over $50. at the ti time -- should not be used a a christmas tree including projects such as smithsonian repairs, upgrades to oh she an nick airplanes. >> by the way, ignoring the fact that those know ya airplanes were very helpful in helping us to predict this hurricane.
while his principal was adding relief things to at bill the reality is he tried to block a bill that would have provided relief to americans who were in disparate need because of a natural disaster. ♪ hey, is this our turn? honey...our turn? yeah, we go left right here. (woman vo) great adventures are still out there. we'll find them in our subaru outback. (avo) love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. get 0% apr financing for 63 months on all new 2017 subaru outback models. now through august 31. it's time for the biggest sale of the year with the new sleep number 360 smart bed. it senses your every move and automatically adjusts on both sides to keep you effortlessly comfortable. and snoring.... does your bed do that?
doing so much folks. like the wall. we all love the wall, don't we? >> it's my favorite album. >> what do we watch? >> the wall. >> who's going to pay for it? >> mexico. that's right. you are, the american taxpayer. >> it is time to come to grips with the truth. mexico's not paying for a border wall. at his actual rally in phoenix this week trump told his supporters he will shut down the government congress doesn'ten find a way to make them pay. when congress returns right after labor day, and the clock is ticking because they've only
got until september 30th to pass a bill to fund the government and to avoid a shutdown. joining me now is republican strategist evan siegfried. welcome to all of you. thanks very much. i'm going to start with you, evan, as republican. because this is a republican republican fight for the moment because they can't get it done without democratic help and no democrat is going to vote for anything that looks like remotely funding a border wall. according to sarah huckabee sander, answering questions about this wall, she says the president -- to pun intended -- prepared to go to the wall about this. let's play that. >> in is something the president's committed to. he's committed to protecting american lives, and doing that through the border wall is something that's important. it's a priority and we're moving forward with it. >> he's not saying that mexico is going to pay for it. >> he hasn't said they're not, either. >> which was definitely the highlight of that press
conference for me. he's not said they're not. mexico has made it clearer' not paying for it. he started talking about nafta now. but nobody wants to get involved in this stuff. this president doesn't have enough successes to make this push. >> well, let's look at it this way. the president is so obsessed with the wall he's willing to cut off his thenose to spite hi face. it's going to turn nish republicans in the midterms. the economy is going to go south. that's the one thing he has going for him. let's look at the wall itself. you could have $1 trillion from republicans and democrats. but still you need to use eminent domain to seize the public land to get there. texas has a 1254 mile border with mexico and only 100 miles of that is public land. that's 11054 mile the you're going have to pay for to get the land. >> the constitution says, in the
fifth amendment, it is that you have to pay people fairly for whatever you take. >> and for the border fence act, which was passed in 2006, it actually went out and we're still litigation to this day for just 700 miles of almost 200,000 border. >> talking about things as wide as a sidewalk to giant ranches chld and when you look at what happened with the fence, there are texas ran chers who had gates built by the government and now they regret it because it's on their land, and in order to get to the cattle. they have to ask the government permission to go on their own land. it's a boondoggle the president needs to give up. >> james, i often tell people we need a trillion dollars to fix the infrastructure in this country. according to evans calculation this h is not a $10 million wall. >> it's not. i'm so glad we opened this
segment with the snl skit. first of all, the american people aren't interested in this. when you poll the american folks, they're not interested in this. the actual cost estimates range between somewhere like $22 billion and as high as $70 billion. those numbers do not include maintenance of the wall itself. >> that's just the construction. >> that's none of that. that's actually just the construction, and to evan's point, when you speak to folks along the border, there are many private homeowners who are not interested. it's absurd on its face and add the layer of it that campaign trump that says mexico is going to pay for this and we see the recording where he's interested in h just the appearance of mexico paying for it. it just points to once again that this administration is disingenuous in ow they
prosecute. in the end, there will not be any kind of border wall at least in the way he's promised his campaign supporters. it doesn't make any kind of sense. >> as you know, ev ran went right to my sweet spot talking about the economy. and by the way, no president who's been in office for a few month the gets to take credit for the. low enemployment rate. good job roet. okay gdp growth. americans hate congress, more than they hate the president. but the worse thing congress or the president is could is as this economy is gaining speed or at least maintaining its clip is to stick your foot out and trip it, with is what a government shutdown would do. >> i think that's right. if donald trump really sticks to this and shuts down the government, it really does hurt the economy. but i want to step back for a quick second. we have to remember the reason that the build a wall kind of line came into play is because
donald trump couldn't understand immigration policy. so then his aides gave him that line, and so he took it and ran with it and it became like this crying call every day of his rallies for 18 month the. and now he wants to turn this awful policy, this failed policy into reality. and so that's what we're seeing her in time. le but at the end of the day, the republicans hold all the cards on this. if they allow donald trump to shut down the government over this failed policy, they own it. they own -- they've enabled him continuously. they own everything from last week, from him defending white supremacy all the way from pardoning arpaio. >> it's interesting because the republicans owned from the last time too. >> that's right. >> let me ask you this. on fox this morning, rex tillerson, the secretary of state was asked by chris wallace
about him trump represents. it's get that for you once i have it. but rex tillerson said donald trump speaks for himself. he has not been a long standing participant in the republican party but it is something i'm sure a lot of republicans heard this morning and want to start repeating. because they don't need the problem that is the republican party already has being made continuously worse by this president. >> let's look at what's going on. the president is isolated, overblown sense of grievance and start to go lash out. congressional republican the state-of-the-a started moving away in july. now, we're seeing them distance themselves on arpaio, on the wall and debt ceiling game of chicken the president wants to i pla. you're seeing more and more republican the be emboldened and saying things publicly that they were thinking privately.
the president has never identified. it's always they. it's never we. he's attacking mitch mcconnell who is obviously the most important person he needs on his side. and b, if the mueller probe resorts in some sort of articles of impeachment. >> he's going to need. >> and he's going to be yeah, bye felicia. >> right. folks might start reading jeff flake's book about what republican the need to think about. thanks very much for being with us. you will all be back for us in h the next hour or so. thank you. coming up in the next hour, we are awaiting a press conference from the mayor of houston and joined by joe arpaio's lawyer. more a.m. joy after the break. surprise!
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it's been about eight months since the unverified contents of the trump dossier first leaked to the press. we'll tell you more when we return. marie callender knows that a homemade turkey dinner can make anyone slow down and pull up a seat to the table. that's why she takes the time to season her turkey to perfection, and make stuffing from scratch. so that you can spend time on what really matters. marie callender's. it's time to savor.
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it alleges overt knowing collusion between trump and russia and russia as effort to interfere in order to hurt hillary clinton. that's what the dossier says. if it's now be to be publicly defended and explained and backed up, that's conceivably the whole ball game. >> she put a fine point on the implications of this week's big russia gate news. that is 10 hours of testimony before the senate judiciary committee. he's the head of the committee that compiled the inverified dossier alleging direct
collusion between the russians and trump campaign. for now that testimony delivered to the committee in a closed door committee is not a matter of public record. however, during a meeting, mer suggest thad might change. >> i would like the transcripts released. >> i i don't know why i wouldn't but i don't want to say to because i never in all the years i've been in h kocongress i hav gone through this process. >> joining me now is msnbc national security special agent. former fbi. good to see you all. clint let me start with you. we're in a different world now. americans have rarely in the history, certainly in the last
few decades have not spent this time watching congressional testimony. this is an interesting concept that there are stunning stunnin allegations against donald trump and the trump campaign in this dossier that's not been verified. should the public have access? >> it is interesting, last time we had an investigation like this was iran contra, that was narrowed to a few media outlets, there was no cross dialogue amongst people across the country about what was out there. >> it was one way, everybody watched what information came out. >> exactly. it was very deliberate and slow. what you see now is there are parallel investigations, you have information coming out in the media before it is coming out to congress and you're hearing about subpoenas in different places, so people are trying to piece it together, and no one controls the entire situation. so what's fascinating is the level of interest from the public and also the level of confusion, you know.
we know more and understand less. it is a weird time, you know, with this. so i think what's very important about the dossier and why some of this needs to come public in one way or another is that it is a document that was raw intelligence, never went through analysis, wasn't corroborated with other sources, you don't know what's valid or invalid, that creates added confusion to the investigation. i think in the hearing, whether they do a public version or release the closed door version, it would be good for the american public to put some resolution to that. >> malcolm, there are a lot of americans on the left and right who don't trust the scrubbing process, the analysis process. they think that governments or intelligence agencies put unnecessary spin on it, or that the administration tries to spin intelligence, a la the iraq war and chemical weapons. the bottom line as clint points out this is dirty information, no pun intended. this is information that we don't really fully understand what's true and what's not true.
to whom does the responsibility fall to tell us what in this explosive and yet unconfirmed dossier is true and or important? >> well, that will be on director mueller and the mueller investigation. that's the job of the special counsel here is to determine whether any of this rumored intelligence in the steele dossier can provide insight and framework to his own investigation. you know, the fbi has been carrying out a counter intelligence investigation since june of last year. they have their own data, their own resources and certainly access to the u.s. intelligence community's information that has already created a classified version of this. the most that we can expect to get out of the steele dossier is confirming or refuting the various things inside that, but believe it or not that dossier has got some very, very explosive information in it, and
i don't mean the salacious stuff. >> that's correct. and that's the important part. most people, the salacious stuff is for gossip mags, the other is for the people. he says fusion gps is proud of the work it has conducted and stands by it. this is what they're saying publicly. we don't know what glen simpson said behind closed doors, but let me just show you something. president trump has been venting his frustrations to members of congress, he's been in sort of open warfare with some of them. there have been some where he said donald trump has expressed frustration over a bipartisan bill sanctioning russia, he tried to convince senate foreign relations chairman bob corker of tennessee that it wasn't good policy, and then you saw bob corker made some offhand remarks last week suggesting that donald trump really doesn't understand some of the things he needs to understand as president, which
got people talking about whether donald trump is fit to be president. bob corker was a guy who was talked about as donald trump's potential vice presidential candidate. bob corker is a guy who was talked about as secretary of state. donald trump is fighting with everybody about russia which makes one wonder, what is it about russia that makes donald trump fight with everybody about? >> well, that's the ball game there, that's the biggest question. we can talk about intelligence, we can talk about evidence, but donald trump's own words and tweets and his own action or inaction i think leads to a lot of speculation and it is just odd. i mean, look, one of the last things barack obama did was throw out 35 essentially russian spies, seize two intelligence compounds. donald trump has done nothing. in fact, he has done everything to sort of coddle the russians, not to rebuke them. clint mentioned the confusion
the public has, this is an operation that was deep and wide. the united states government had no official reaction since president trump has taken office to this into the core democratic values, that's shocking. the fact the president hasn't said anything. to add to that that the president seems to make warm comments towards putin is just, you know, odd. >> so clint, you're the investigator in the group. you're a professional investigator for the fbi. you're as good as it gets. if navid wrote a book about this, the title should be "it's just odd." i run into people on the streets streets, i don't know if they do it to you, the question is always why does it look like the president is hiding something. if there are investigations to be had by reputable organizations like the fbi or bob mueller or house committees that are supposed to be bipartisan, why did you let them
happen. if you didn't do anything wrong, let the investigation happen and exxon rate yourself. >> it is the most bizarre behavior of a president in the modern era. >> since richard nixon. >> yes. if there's nothing there, you don't even bring it up. if your agenda is what you want to advance, business, infrastructure, you go do that. no matter the situation, once a week, sometimes every day you see the president drift back to an obsession about the russian investigation or talking to senators in congress on both sides. >> something about which he is not obsessed in this fashion about anything else, not about health care or tax reform, not about things that he actually should be. >> and why praise putin or say you want to deal make with putin. whether or not it had anything to do with his actual election, we had direct meddling inside the united states by a foreign power. you have to address that if you're president. you can't claim to be strong on defense and lower your defenses to a main adversary, that being
russia. it is inexplicable. every time you look at this and i think it will go away, he brings it back to the spotlight. >> clint, thanks very much for joining us. if you do write a book called "it's just odd" i would like a little credit for it. malcolm, you'll be back next hour, discuss a name for your next book. we have been monitoring the mayor of houston's update. he said there are more than 2,000 emergency calls received by local officials. we will bring more details as they emerge. more "am joy" right after this break. (boy) and these are the lungs. (class) ewwww! (boy) sorry. (dad) don't worry about it. (mom) honey, honey, honey, honey! (vo) at our house, we need things that are built to last. that's why we got a subaru. (avo) love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. get 0% apr financing for 63 months on all new 2017 legacys. ends august 31st.
so find a venus smooth that contours to curves, the smoother the skin, the more comfortable you are in it. flexes for comfort, and has a disposable made for you. skin smoothing venus razors. good morning. welcome back to "am joy." joy has got some very well deserved time off. i am alley develop chee in, a weak facsimile. thank you for sticking with me. harvey is a tropical storm, after being a hurricane longer than most hurricanes last after they've hit land, it is still battering houston though. the storm has showered southeast texas with over 20 inches of
rain already, and there's at least that much more to come. that's the problem. meteorologists expect catastrophic flooding. texas governor greg abbott is expected to give updates on the storm a little more than an hour from now. while harvey rages on in texas, the president has been raging on on twitter. among other things, including the flooding, he's already tweeted about the border wall. quote, with mexico being one of the highest crime nations in the world, we must have the wall. mexico will pay for it through reimbursement/other. we are in the nafta, parenthesis, worst trade deal ever, re-negotiation process with mexico and canada, both being very difficult. may have to terminate, question mark. trump surrogates are facing questions about the president's values after he failed to convincingly condemn the actions of white supremacists in charlottesville, virginia, a failure rebuked by a united
nations committee this week. fox news' christopher wallace asked secretary of state rex tillerson about that this morning. >> i don't believe anyone doubts the american people's values or the commitment of the american government or the government's agencies to advancing those values and defending those values. >> and the president's values? >> the president speaks for himself, chris. >> are you separating yourself from that, sir? >> i've spoken, i've made my own comments as to our values as well in a speech i gave to the state department this past week. >> wow. that might even be a hash tag wow. joining me, evan significant freed, republican strategist, richard painter, former ethics lawyer for george w. bush, and msnbc contributor malcolm nance. there was an awkward pause for a second. rex tillerson is a very deliberate man. in 20 years as a business
reporter, he is not a guy who talks to even the business press. he is a very deliberate man. things don't come out of his mouth accidentally. how did you read that? >> yeah, he's also the most senior cabinet secretary in trump's administration, so him saying those words is remarkable, shows how isolated donald trump is, but i have to say this, ali, words are cheap, and what is the action. there's been so many red lines drawn over the last several months with the firing of comey, with shoot, go back to access hollywood, still there's been no action from republicans. i say this to rex tillerson and cohen and others, why are you still there? if this is such a problem for you, if he doesn't speak for you, why have you not resigned? >> evan, this is an interesting point because a number of the president's so-called globalists or democrat advisers as breitbart calls them, the
treasury secretary and gary cohn, economic adviser are under pressure to rebuke the president or resign. man uch in, 300 yale fellow graduates wrote a letter to him, he responded with a fairly defensive position about this thing starting with the i don't know why i have to defend the president. gary cohn got a lot of ink for a more reasoned response about why he thinks it is important to be in the service of the american people and stay in that white house and that the white house has to do more on these things, but to the point, lot of people say why don't you just leave? >> i think every cabinet secretary has to take a gut check, say am i here for the right reasons. secretary mattis, general dunford mcmaster and john kelly are there to try to keep the president from breaking the world. they aren't exactly the biggest fans of his but they have a patriotic sense of duty, whereas gary cohn wants to be fed chair
when yellen's term is up. >> that's not the same as saving the world. >> no, that's advancing your own agenda. there are republicans stepping up. but when jeff flake stood up, his approval rating dropped 18 points, democrats attacked him for standing up because to them, standing up means voting democratic party line on issues, and jeff flake said it is about morals, not about policy that i am standing up to the president. >> so richard painter, to this point, jeff flake's argument i thought was very compelling, his op-ed and his book about conservatives or republicans going back to what values are, distancing themselves from the wrong things, and he clearly enunciates that donald trump is the wrong thing. richard painter, i ask this of you. a lot of people know you to be a critic of this administration, but you have been republican for a long time. >> well, yes. we need to go back to
fundamental values of the republican party. we are the party of abraham lincoln. we are a party that has for many decades strongly supported civil rights. there are arguments in recent decades about affirmative action and other issues where the republicans differ amongst themselves, but this administration has taken us into a new terrain, catering to the lowest elements of our society. we all know and i have to say, i have been in republican party politics for 30 years. we hear people from the far right, so-called alt-right talk about globalists, they're talking about jews. we know what's going on. there's an attack on a number of people in the trump white house, in the trump administration who happen to be jewish, also an attack on african americans going on, that's what we saw in charlottesville. none of it has anything to do with traditional republican values. the same with the pardon of sheriff joe who profiled
hispanics for search and seizure and to try to deport people. this is not the values, these aren't the values of the republican party. this has nothing to do with conservatism. i think when this is all over and donald trump is gone, people such as senator flake and mccain and others are going to emerge as heroes of the republican party. >> to evan's point, for the moment they're taking a beating as a result of it. malcolm, chris whipple wrote the book on chiefs of staff said in the final days of the nixon administration, presidency while he was drinking heavily and speaking to the oil portraits, his chief of staff decided to stick around to make sure that the president -- that he was between the president and the nuclear codes. to evan's point about mcmaster, kelly, mattis sticking around so the president doesn't break the world, do you buy into that? >> yes, i do buy into that, and you know, i had a talk with
chris whipple about this a couple weeks ago. the chief of staff's role is paramount in white houses to keep the president on track. what we're seeing now with general kelly, he is doing a very good job of keeping the rest of the staff on track. he is starting to weed out people who should never have been in the white house, especially the steve bannon faction, but for the most part, they have to keep an eye on the president. the president has ultimate authority to use atomic weapons, and the only thing that can stop him is not verifying that he is the president of the united states. everything else requires that system to operate and to launch a weapon, destroy another country in 35 minutes. so we're going to have to see where the patriots among those generals will make sure are in check, especially if he decides to go off the deep end. we heard from director of intelligence clapper, that's quite possible. >> can you believe we're having
this conversation in 2017? what should democrats actually want because there are a lot of people who since election day, lot of democrats, people that didn't like donald trump were waiting for his impending failure. as he seems to get closer to bringing that on, there are a lot of people have to think carefully about the fact that we don't really want entire impending failure because if all sorts of people leave the president's side and he gets to surround himself with the steven millers and sebastian gorkas and bannons of the world, the world might be a less safe place. >> no, i agree with malcolm. i think when it comes to the foreign policy component of folks in the white house, yeah, i think it is important for mcmaster and others to be there, to really protect our country as much as they can. but i think to your question about democrats, i think the majority of americans disagree with everything that donald trump is doing with policy. you've seen that with the repeal
of obamacare, we've seen that with many other protests in the streets. what democrats need to continue to do is stand strong, reject all of the failed policies that donald trump is trying to push forth. i think here's the thing. once again, i'm going to say this, republicans hold the cards here. they're the ones who have all three branches of power. they're the ones that can stop donald trump and they're not. their words are nice. he goes off the rails, the republicans condemn him as they should, but they have not taken any action. perfect example is the censure resolution. here's opportunity for republicans to go on the record and say this is not our country, not just to americans here but our allies, our adversaries to say no, we do not believe the things that donald trump says, but they have not, not one republican has signed on to the censure resolution. so this is the problem.
they have not taken any action. and what is it going to take? >> richard painter, let me ask you to that question because since the president's comments on charlottesville, episode a, b, and episode 3, and then the discussion from tennessee senator corker who was a big ally of donald trump's that he may not really understand what the president -- may not proses the basic capabilities of being president, some people start to talk about replacement of president trump. is that a real conversation? >> i am sure behind closed doors it has, the question is who will be the first to pull the trigger. if you were to privately poll republican leaders, ask them would they rather have mike pence be president or donald trump, i think it's pretty clear what the answer is. i wonder whether you could find more than a handful of senators would prefer donald trump. the question is, are they willing to pull the trigger and
stand up to the president, and encourage the house and senate to remove him and do it quickly before the 2018 elections are a debacle. i think at the rate we're at now, voters will turn against any member of the senate and house not willing to remove the president. it is a serious situation, trying to appeal to the alt-right breitbart news, a racist publication, and the kkk, the lowest elements of society, this has nothing to do with traditional conservatism. they read dallas morning news and "the wall street journal," not breitbart. people like sebastian gorka and bannon are gone but other alt-right people are in the white house, steven miller and others. they all need to be removed. the president needs to stop cow towing to the racist factions, which is what happened with the pardon of sheriff joe. he is constantly looking for the people to the bottom of the
barrel to try and appeal based on racial divisions, religious divisions, as i say, the attack on globalists is really an attack on jews. it's a very disturbing situation. >> not that i am asking anyone to go to breitbart, but if you go there and look at any reference to a jewish globalist, they actually have little globes next to their name on the actual website. that's the trick that breitbart uses for jewish globalists. to richard's point, the republican party has for a very long time been home to some very influential jews in america and has been a place that has respected the intellectual contribution and political contribution that jews have made, sobriety bart is out of synch with that approach. thanks to all of you. this show is new to me, hard to keep track. i'm sure i am going to see some
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sessions if he could drop charges against arpaio. when he was told that would be inappropriate, he decided to grant him clemency. the white house confirmed that post report saying it was a normal discussion on legal matters. as a reminder, arpaio was convicted for ignoring a judge's order to stop detaining people of color that he felt looked like undocumented immigrants. he was facing up to six months in prison, but will not serve any sentence now. joining me, joe arpaio's attorney, jack wilenchik. what is joe arpaio feeling like today? >> well, as you heard, he expects to make some public statements this coming week, and you know, we have been saying this is a culmination of a long effort. by the way, i have to correct something that you said there. there's been a lot of misinformation. this was not conviction for racial profiling or targeting people of color, this was conviction for ignoring a judge's order that said you're not an immigration officer and therefore do not act like an
immigration officer. >> let's put it up. you're a lawyer. let's put it on the screen. the 2013 -- >> i can't see the screen. >> i will read it. 2013 order that sheriff arpaio didn't comply with for which he was convicted of contempt. >> 2011. >> there's 2013 and 2011. >> there's a 2011. you have the wrong order. that's okay. >> let me read what it says. maricopa sheriff's office enjoined from using hispanic ancestry or race in any factor making law enforcement decisions pertaining to whether a person is authorized to be in the country. now put up the 2011 report from the justice department, separate issue all together. maricopa county sheriff's office engages in racial profiling of latinos, routinely punishes inmates for failing to understand commands given in english. chronic culture of disregard for legal constitutional
obligations. fair to say race is a very big part of this. >> well, so the order you put up there, again, i can't see it, that's the 2013 order. he was never convicted of violating that order and sheriff's office complied with that. 2011 order he was convicted of violating which said do not detain anybody based solely on being illegal alien without more. and the basis for that was the sheriff's office had previously been dep u advertised to be immigration officers and had that authority revoked by the obama administration in 2009, so in 2011 a federal court judge said you're no longer immigration officers, don't act like them. the problem became the sheriff's office looked at the order and said well, we're not detaining people just for being illegal aliens, only reason we would is if we turned them over to i.c.e. or border patrol. that's what he -- >> that's not common practice, that's -- >> and that never happened here.
>> on what basis was sheriff arpaio and deputies detaining people that otherwise wontd be detained, other than the fact they thought they might be undocumented immigrants? >> great question. they were awful lawful stops, and the government admitted that. lawful stops, one case stopping a guy on suspicion of armed burglary. what happened is after they would clear the guy, they would learn he potentially was an illegal immigrant. somebody would be stopped, asked for license and registration, wouldn't have an american id, maybe have a mexican passport, only speaking spanish, the deputy would ask in spanish are you here legally and the guy would admit i am not here legally. the deputy would call i.c.e. or border pa treel, i have an illegal alien, border patrol every case said bring them here. that's what he was convicted of that's what his office is accused of doing. it is a common practice.
>> again, this is where the issue is, not really common practice. mayors of chicago, san francisco, new york, mayors across the country who are saying it is not common practice, it hurts our ability to police when people don't come to the police because they think our job is to turn them over to immigration authorities. to say it is empirically not common practice in america to do that. >> ali, this is why we have trials. they had a border patrol testify it is common practice. i am quoting him. this is not chicago, this is the state of arizona, we are on the border. that was his testimony, that is common practice at the time and currently amongst law enforcement agencies in the state of arizona. >> the 2009 instruction by the obama administration applied to both chicago and arizona. it is a federal law that a sheriff is not actually supposed to be above. >> no. so there's a 2009 -- they revoked his authority. >> correct.
they revoked. if one's authority is revoked, one can't do that thing. >> the confusion became can we still cooperate with the feds. in other words, if we have a guy, we've done a lawful stop, whether suspicion of armed burglary, whatever it was, and learn he is an illegal alien, can we turn him over to the feds. the judge wasn't clear until 2013 until he said do not turn them over, or hold them to be turned over to the feds. >> is it likely sheriff joe arpaio who has been at this for decades was actually confused? >> absolutely. that was our defense at trial. the problem we had at trial was we had to try contempt of court to the court. that wasn't a fair trial. asked for a jury four or five times. trying contempt of court is like trying the crime to the victim. we never got a jury trial. at this point, all that's left to do is the president to step in as a check on the system, there were serious doubts about the conviction and i believe the
president believes it is a wrongful conviction to pardon heir him. >> bring in richard painter who sees it differently. richard? >> well, part of the problem here is there's an attitude toward judges that's really very destructive. we see this with the president who himself said a mexican american judge should be disqualified or recused from hearing his case because the judge is mexican american, might be biased against the president. we heard that during the campaign. the president again when courts of appeal struck down his immigration order referred to so-called judges. we have here a sheriff who was told to do something by a judge and didn't do it. that is contempt of court. that's what he was convicted of doing. we need to have rule of law and order in this country. if a judge tells somebody to do something, they do it. and that includes the president of the united states, a sheriff, or anyone else. that's law and order. i think that there president has
shown contempt for law and order. what he did was try to obstruct justice in this investigation by going to jeff sessions, same play book he used with the russian investigation. when that doesn't work, follows through with a pardon. and i fully expect he may try the same with the russian investigation. so this is about a lot more than the trial of sheriff joe in arizona. this is a national phenomena, disrespect for the judiciary, disrespect for rule of law and order and very dangerous for our country. >> let me ask you this, jack. what is joe arpaio going to get out of a press conference on this topic? >> well, at this point as we all know, sheriff joe does a lot of talking to the media and while the criminal case was pending on the advice of myself and co-counsel, we told him not to talk to media. and at this point i think he's just been dying to do that, and to get his voice heard. he has the first amendment right to do that. >> i will say, you said the
sheriff, i'm not sure i am on this one, the sheriff may have been confused by the 2009 order and it was clarified in 2011. >> '13. >> 2009 is when the obama administration lifted his ability to deal with this. let's be clear. that's what this stems from. so the point is in this past december, the sheriff has gone on and said he proved that president obama is a kenyan born muslim. i'm a kenyan born muslim, he wasn't at any of the meetings. this has to sort of hurt his credibility. helps your argument that the sheriff, former sheriff may be confused though. >> let's not forget, he is an 85-year-old man, there's a lot of testimony. what happened at trial, there was testimony from everybody at the sheriff's office, even his own lawyer, chiefs, lieutenants, sergeants, everybody read that order, nobody understood it.
so if he is in criminal contempt of court, they all were. i think it is pore what mr. paint are said, it is important to respect the courts. the order has to be clear and definite. judge says you need to stand in court, if you don't stand up, that's criminal contempt. the judge says you say one more bad thing -- >> he was held in contempt. the judge made that determination. so the sheriff, you may have a different view, the judge did make that determination. >> incorrectly, absolutely. if not for the pardon, we would have appealed this. >> thanks for being with us. we appreciate it. good to see you bolt. coming up, checking in on the rescues in houston up next on "am joy." . coming up, checking in on the rescues in houston up next on "am joy." . coming up, checking in on the rescues in houston up next on "am joy." t. coming up, checking in on the rescues in houston up next on "am joy." h. coming up, checking in on the rescues in houston up next on "am joy." my experience with usaa has been excellent.
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will get worse and could be historic. a devastating 27 inches of rain has already fallen in some places. harvey is expected to dump another 15 to 25 inches through thursday. this water doesn't get a chance to drain. more of it is going to pile up. nbc's stephanie goff is on the ground in houston. that doesn't look like ground, it looks like water. >> reporter: and a lot of it. i'm on the on ramp to highway 59. if you look down this road, it is unbelievable. that bridge is 15 feet up. still looking at four or five feet of water. i need to explain why we're here in the first place. we're here because there's a woman that lives south of the city, she's with her dog and her daughter, she can't get through to 911. she called our news desk, she thought our news desk would have a better chance of sending someone to help them because the emergency services in this city
are swamped. we were in downtown houston when we got the call. when we got the call, we were witnessing a water rescue that we were about maybe three blocks from buffalo bayou, which runs through the center of town. there was a worker that was in his pickup truck, he went into the water, he wasn't sure how deep it would get, what people do, they say you see standing water, don't drive through it, his engine stalled and he was stuck. bayou, buffalo bayou through the center of the city continues to rise. it is rising because of what's dropping on my head now. this rain has not stopped, it has been essentially a torrential downpour in the city of houston since last night. when i spoke to you earlier, we talked about the fact that this storm has stalled. not only has it stalled, it completely stopped overnight between 12 and 2:00, it didn't move, phenomenal.
i am not a meteorologist, but never heard of that happening before. and what you're seeing now in houston are the effects of that. we talked earlier, keeping track of stream gauges, they gauge the flooding around the city. 95% of those gauges in harris county, which is houston, are at their banks or over their banks. one he mentioned is actually 12 feet over its banks at this point, and the water keeps rising. it is an unbelievable situation here, ali. >> can you ask the photographer, he may be unable to do this. how far down can we see down the road behind you, how far can he zoom in. >> reporter: brian, zoom in down the highway, see if you can get a gauge of the flooding. >> as far as the eye can see. >> reporter: yeah. and this is 69, but the other highways are not in any better
shape. major highways into houston, almost all of them are shut down. we have been trying all morning to get south of the city, southeast of the city, one of the hardest areas hit overnight, some places getting 26 inches of rain in a 24 hour period, we actually can't get there. we have been trying all morning. the roads are blocked, shut off. >> worth noting that harris county, houston is the seat of harris county. third biggest county, houston is the fourth biggest city, harris the third biggest county. more than 5 million people in that metro area, and this flooding extends far beyond houston. unfortunately it extends to many, many, many counties in texas. but for all of those people -- >> reporter: alif, i apologize for interrupting you. it is worth noting that two days ago when we got here, the mayor was asked why he isn't asking people to evacuate. he said right now, we want
people to shelter in place. that decision is going to come under real scrutiny in the next 24 hours. in response, when he was asked about it, he said look, we tried to do that in 2008 and if you remember those scenes and they were pretty unbelievable. trying to get people out of the city is really, really difficult, and that decision to have them shelter in place, which is a critical one, you can understand it given what we saw in 2008. no one expected to see this this morning. >> yes. as that discussion goes on, stephanie, it will be worth remembering that's a major, major city. evacuating small towns and villages is a different story than evacuating a city with millions and millions of people. that discussion will take place as you said over the next few days, it will come under scrutiny. thanks so much. stephanie goff. they created to try to create a shock wave of news they thought would go uncovered. it was wrong. stay with us. utiful moments.
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we've got breaking news about the russian investigation led by special counsel robert mueller. that's not the only breaking story on the russian investigation tonight. according to "the wall street journal," investigators are looking at efforts by peter w. smith, long time activist and donor to obtain hillary clinton's deleted e-mails from russian hackers. ask you to hold on a second, we're getting breaking news on an extremely busy news night. tremendous amount happening at this hour. >> all of that was happening as hurricane harvey made landfall near corpus christi friday. the white house was making major news on multiple fronts. sebastian gorka, deputy adviser to the president, forced out of his white house position even though he says he resigned. the white house announced a presidential pardon as you have been hearing of sheriff joe arpaio, former sheriff joe arpaio. donald trump made his ban on transgender troops official, signing an order that directs
the pentagon to move forward on the ban. all of this while the hurricane was hitting. not to mention news that special counsel robert mueller subpoenaed pr executives that worked with former campaign manager paul manafort. welcome to you both. thank you for being here. i want to be clear, joy reid tweeted, she's just on vacation, but she tweeted friday night trump pardoned racist convicted criminal joe arpaio, signed a transgender military ban with a monster hurricane as cover. creativity points to joy on that particular one. but katherine, we actually can walk and chew gum at the same time. as i was on the air friday night, i was reminding people, we can cover all of this, we can do all of this. no amount of distraction prevents us covering what has to be covered, but it seemed unseemly gl maybe we can cover it, spend time talking about it. doesn't mean the american public
has the band width to process all of these crises and breaking news events happening simultaneously. i think the timing of this was designed such that the vast majority of americans would not have the band width to get outraged because they're distracted by other things. people that really care, the arpaio fans, they're going to find out and relish this news and celebrate. >> what are your thoughts on how this was handled? >> his first natural disaster, he is using it to create political disasters and try to slip them through. the good news, all of this is just business as usual for trump. we knew he was going to pardon arpaio, he directly said so. gorka being in and out is no consequence. this white house, being in and out is of no consequence. roger stone fired during the campaign, keeps talking to trump. gorka's job is on a bizarre parallel llc trump created, now he can go on tv and talk about this stuff. with arpaio, the plain thing is
trump was going to do this. he can give teleprompter speeches about unity. finally he is appealing to what remains of his base with great disinterest in the rest of the country, and he is perfectly open about it. he says in advance, i'm going to do this nasty thing, and then he does it. >> and he goes back and forth. the charlottesville thing is weird. we have to categorize it, charlottesville response a, b, c, and then phoenix. >> yes. if trump were trying to broadcast a message that he doesn't support racists, he is not a racist, et cetera, the way to do that would not be to pardon the most famous racist in america. not to mention all of the other terrible things arpaio has done that i'm sure you've gone over already. yes, the message that he is clearly projecting is that he is with the trump kins, with the
alt-right, he supports their guys and hopes those allies are being loyal to him. >> harry, nicole wallace said on tv as this was breaking friday night that there's no political impulse that donald trump seems able to control. he tweets things out in the middle of these disasters, this morning, while the nation's eyes are on houston, a major city where people are trapped and people have lost their lives, he is tweeting people should read sheriff david clark's book about campaigning in a state he won in 2016. he just has no ability to hold those impulses back. >> he is still campaigning, officially, practically. there's not going to be any break for being president in between, and we're six months in. so look, kelly can control the white house and he really can, and he can push people like bannon and gorka out, and it doesn't matter because the white house doesn't matter. again, with trump's operation, it is who has his ear, who can get him on the phone, who shows up on tv talking about this. whether they're inside or out is
no consequence, it is just about trump. >> interesting analysis. thanks to you both for being here. great to see you both. coming up in the next hour, alex witt brings you the latest on dramatic flooding in and around houston, texas. first, donald trump says he is going to pitch the american people on his tax plan this week. yay. this is my area. i know all about this. what's in it? we'll talk about it on the other side. ♪
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when treasury secretary steve mnuchin said it was going to be done by the end of august, everyone who knew anything about economics said no way. that was before this administration fell apart on health care, that was before the administration failed to get anything done so now mnuchin on friday admits the administration is not going to be passing significant tax reform by august, maybe, because as bloomberg is reporting, the president won't even release his own plan and will rely instead of congress to "solve the big questions." just because the president doesn't have details won't stop him from launching a multistate tour this week starting in missouri to sell the public on his tax reform proposals. joining me now is jen kearns of the washington examiner, a former spokesperson for the california republican party. what's he launching? what's he going to talk about? he doesn't have a plan. >> i haven't seen the exact plan but i have been briefed on the broad strokes of the plan.
i understanding is he's going to let congress introduce the official plan. there's hope yets for democrats, at ali. republicans have a keen way of shooting ourselves in the foot so i'm saying to my democrat friends that there's hopes that this could fail. >> the problem with tax reform is that broad strokes are hard. i have broad strokes to be 15 pounds thinner. i've had them for a long time. the only way that happens is with hard work and i have maintained if you thought health care was hard, tax reform is probably harder. >> i think the obamacare replace and repeal debate was significantly more difficult. you have issues like medicaid, all that tangled mess in the states. tax reform is easier and here's what i know to expect. we'll see permanent reductions in the personal income tax. currently people can only deduct $6,000 per individual in upwards of $12,000 for a married couple.
that is set to double under this plan. you have small businesses who are bearing a great burden of the taxes in this country. they employ nearly half of the private sector work force but their tax rate ali is 46%. >> that's because big companies don't pay taxes. we have a very uneven tax -- corporate tax application so president trump likes to talk about how it's the highest in the world, statutorily it is, but that's noting a recally real. >> well, look, our tax code is outdated, you bring up a great point there. we are not competitive with some western european nations -- >> or canada, for that matter. >> or, you know what, for example the -- one of the provisions of the tax code, the only other country that has a particular provision of our tax code is north korea. this tax code has not been updated -- >> well, he did say the guy who runs north korea is a smart cookie. here's the problem, you know about this. if you make these cuts that are
popular with voters and kind of cool, i'd love to pay less tax, that hurts the government's rev move in which increases the debt which is not often as much of a problem for doechlts democrats republicans. republicans hate this. >> but republicans are looking for a victory and i think the debt issue is much less important to republicans than immediate tax relief. this issue is very popular among voters and among democrats, 65% of overall americans want tax reform and now. 70% of democrats would like to see tax relief immediately. this gives a ton of cover to democrats who might not want to work with president trump on a host of other issues, i understand you won't be with the president on transgender policy for the military, social issues, but this is an easy victory for democrats to get on board and work with the president and say,
yeah, we worked with the guy. >> you're a journalist and communications pro. you started talking about tax reform and ended talking about tax relief and i suspect if we talk for another few minutes, it will be tax cuts. that's the problem, we're not reforming the tax code, we're buying vote biscuiting tax which is i agree you democrats may not stand in the way of. >> i think you will see significant reforms. it's a once in a generation opportunity. it's incredibly long, exponentially greater than in 1955. it's doubled and tripled -- >> but when ronald reagan did it and george bush did it it took a year. they studied things and talked to people. this administration comes out with bullet points and then if things become -- get to be voted on 72 hours later in congress. >> that's not necessarily true. a lot of people don't like to see the sausage being made. >> but we should, right? journalists should. i like to read these big documents. >> i love it. i have my hair net on in the back, i'm watching it. >> but we don't have anything to
read. >> this president started talking about it on the campaign flail june of 2015. he spoke about it as president in february of this year after he was inaugurated. people say i saw you and stephanie rule shle saying he ht been working on this at all. >> we've heard in that from inside the white house. that there's no work being done by the president on tax reform. >> not true. he has talked with and his staff has talked with 200 members of congress. when is the last time the president of the united states has reached out to congress in such a wide scale fashion? he's talked with 80 business groups -- >> here's -- i think this is a distinction. there is nobody in america who would say that donald trump doesn't talk a lot. there s there a plan. we may have to leave that. >> there is a plan. we must talk together when we have documents we can read and discuss and project out and make graphics, we can do that.
i have nothing but talk. >> bringing money back from overseas. there's $2.6 trillion sitting in offshore funds. i'm all about a plan. >> it will help bring $260 billion back for government programs. >> jen kearns, thank you very much for joining us. that's our show for today. joy reid is going to be back next saturday. i'll be here with stephanie ruhle tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. and then again at 3:00 p.m. alex witt is up next. so much. thank you! so we're a go? yes! we got a yes! what does that mean for purchasing? purchase. let's do this. got it. book the flights! hai! si! si! ya! ya! ya! what does that mean for us? we can get stuff. what's it mean for shipping? ship the goods. you're a go! you got the green light. that means go! oh, yeah. start saying yes to your company's best ideas. we're gonna hit our launch date! (scream) thank you! goodbye! let us help with money and know-how, so you can get business done. american express open. so you can get business done.
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